What to know Monday about COVID-19 outbreak in Colorado: 400+ hospitalizations, 2600+ cases
The death toll in Colorado from COVID-19 rose to 51 on Monday, including three more deaths in El Paso County.
Scroll to the bottom of this article for video updates on Monday from the governor and mayor of Colorado Springs.
With 11 fatalities attributed to the virus, El Paso County leads the state in deaths, despite having just half the number of confirmed cases as Denver County. Weld County is reporting 10 deaths.
The Pueblo Department of Public Health and Environment announced Monday that an 80-year-old man had passed away due to the coronavirus, bringing the death toll in that county up to two.
Key announcements in Colorado on Monday:
- Gov. Polis announced it is unlikely schools will return to normal this semester. Although not set in stone, it appears likely online learning will be the norm for the rest of the school year.
- The governor continued to push for more compliance with the stay-at-home order issued on Thursday.
- "What we want to make sure that we also see, is that there is greater support and compliance with staying at home in El Paso County," Gov. Jared Polis said. "It's absolutely critical if El Paso County wants to reduce the hospitalization rates and incidents rates that people do their best to be able to stay at home, unless absolutely necessary, just as they do everywhere else in our state."
- On a positive note, the governor also discussed state traffic data as an important example to demonstrate the impact of recent social distancing and stay-at-home measures. Colorado has seen a 60 percent reduction of cars on the road over the last four weeks, according to a network of 50 recorders across the state.
The mayor of Colorado Springs announced funding assistance for businesses in his city. Immediate assistance included two funds:
– The City is working in partnership with Exponential Impact and Pikes Peak Community Foundation to provide relief loans, mentorship, and resources for small businesses. The highest priority for this fund are industries most impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic such as the food industry, retail shops and personal care facilities as these businesses have had to temporarily close, are struggling to pay rent and utilities, and have had to lay off staff. Businesses with 2-25 employees in the Pikes Peak region are eligible to receive up to $25,000 in low-interest loans. Installments of funding will be provided monthly over a three month period. Repayment occurs over three years, and payments are not required for the first year. Terms are 0% in year one and increase by 1% over each of the next two years.
have partnered to provide emergency support for individual artists and creative professionals in El Paso and Teller Counties who are being adversely affected due to cancellation of performances, art openings, lessons or other revenue-generating artistic activity due to COVID-19. The Artist Recovery Fund will provide approximately $500 to cover the most immediate and essential expenses. The Fund is also seeking financial contributions to support their efforts, and all donations are tax-deductible and 100% of contributions will go directly to supporting local artists in need.
Other developments over the weekend:
- President Donald Trump, at one point gunning for an April 12 "reopening" of sorts in the United States, backed away from his Easter goal and
- The president said the peak in the death rate is likely
- Trump approved a
for Colorado, paving the way for federal funding.
- Gov. Jared Polis warned more than 30,000 Coloradans would die if social distancing was not practiced.
- With a 60 percent increase in social distancing, that number is sliced by almost two-thirds to 11,500.
- His hope is an 80 percent increase in social distancing levels, which would drop the number of deaths even further.
- Polis warned that the economy will be worse off in the long run without the stay-at-home order.
- "This path of action will lead to the quickest possible return. To work, to productivity, and to social and economic normalcy."
- The governor is wanting to model the state's approach after South Korea. The country had success in flattening the curve without shutting everything down due to rapid and efficient testing.
- "South Korea doesn't function the exact way it functioned two months ago, but most people are able to go to work, earn a living, and it's generally functioning as an economy in a way that America is not right now."
- With spring break now over, schools statewide have resumed meal pick-up. We have an updated list of pick-up locations
- U.S. Treasury Sec. Steve Mnuchin
Americans could expect to see a one-time stimulus payment deposited directly into their bank accounts within three weeks.
- And a spot of hopeful news: According to a
, officials in Washington state are seeing evidence that their containment efforts are beginning to work. The article states that deaths are not rising as fast as in other states, and the spread of the virus has slowed in the Seattle area. Officials warn the gains are precarious for now, and restrictions will need to continue.
- For information and resources on COVID-19, El Paso and Teller County residents can call 719-575-8888 seven days a week. Monday through Friday, the line is available from 8 a.m.-8 p.m. Weekends, calls will be taken between 8 a.m.-5 p.m.
- The state has a toll-free hotline CO HELP for general questions about COVID-19. That hotline can be reached at both 303-389-1687 and 877-462-2911.
- Those needing assistance with financial services, food, clothing and household needs, mental health, and more can call 211.
for the El Paso County Public Health COVID-19 website
for the CDPHE COVID-19 website.
for the CDC COVID-10 website